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111 18 A Speech at Fudan University1 June 27, 1988 To commemorate the 67th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party, the Municipal Party Committee asked me deliver a speech on the current situation to all the institutes of higher learning in Shanghai and to their Party and administrative leaders. At the same time, the Party secretary and president of Fudan University indicated that its faculty and students wanted me to give a speech here. I felt obliged to come, though I was also wondering whether this was truly the right time to give a speech, because Shanghai is currently beset by difficulties causing considerable dissatisfaction and negativity among the people, with low morale a major problem and the prospects and ideas for further reform still unclear. At a time like this, my coming here to give a speech poses great risks. Despite some hesitation, I came anyway—as mayor, I cannot retreat in the face of difficulties. I must admit that elements of unrest do exist in Shanghai at present. With an urban population of over 7 million plus a transient population of roughly over 2 million, we have almost 10 million people living in upward of 370 square kilometers of land. This situation is unique in China and rare even in the entire world. Furthermore, Shanghai is facing a sharp decline in fiscal revenues, it is highly indebted, old equipment is overworked, and contradictions abound. During a recent heat wave that lasted for two days, some institutes of higher learning experienced water shortages, and within two days, five water mains burst. I went to have a look at one break at the intersection of Beijing Road and Xizang Road, where the rupture had split the street open, and realized that even a single incident of this nature can wreak traffic havoc for as many as 10,000 people. A small event can give rise to a major problem. Such problems are not something that can be solved by one person or by a few persons—it takes the work of the city’s entire population. If we are unable to pull together Shanghai’s 12 million people and make our strength cohesive, and particularly if we cannot unite our Communist Party members and other 1. This is the main part of a speech Zhu Rongji gave at Fudan University during an assembly of Party and university leaders from across Shanghai as well as Fudan faculty and students. Zhu_Shanghai Years_1987-1991_hc_9780815731399_i-xii_1-620.indd 111 12/26/17 12:00 PM 112 A Speech at Fudan University progressive elements, we won’t be able to solve a single problem. That’s why I felt I ought to come here today, to explain this situation to all of you. I must also tell you that I cannot bring you any actual benefits or material rewards, nor can I make any pandering promises and claim that Shanghai will be able to do such-and-such by a certain time. I cannot tell such a lie. Therefore I don’t offer any “capital” with my words. I do, however, speak from my heart, a heart that is utterly sincere in its determination to revitalize Shanghai. I’ve come here to seek your understanding, to seek your support, to call on you to join with the Municipal Party Committee and the municipal government to get us through these difficulties, to unite and fight for Shanghai’s revitalization. To this end, I’d first like to report on work done in recent months. Work Done in the First Half of the Year Shanghai’s two fundamental difficulties right now are first, a drop in fiscal revenues , and second, excessive indebtedness. What does a drop in fiscal revenues mean? Let me give you a few figures. You might remember that we started making adjustments in 1981. At the time, Shanghai’s situation was not too bad, with revenues of RMB 17.1 billion. But revenues fell to RMB 16.5 billion in 1982, and to RMB 15.3 billion in 1983. Beginning in 1984, because of technical upgrades and technology imports as well as some support from the central government, production gradually increased again, and revenues reached RMB 18.1 billion in 1985, topping those of 1981. Revenues began another decline in 1986, dropping to only RMB 17.6 billion, a decrease of RMB 500 million. And in 1987 they fell to RMB 16.5 billion, a decrease of RMB 1.1 billion...


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